Wyoming Supreme Court Decisions

The Wyoming Supreme Court supervises the operations of lower courts in the state, and it holds general jurisdiction to review appeals in both civil and criminal cases. It may issue any writs that may be necessary to fulfill its appellate function, such as writs of habeas corpus, mandamus, prohibition, and certiorari. Its original jurisdiction extends only to habeas corpus cases and certain cases involving mandamus and quo warranto writs as applied to state officers. Five justices serve on the Supreme Court, and they serve terms of eight years.

To qualify to serve on the Wyoming Supreme Court, a candidate must meet the requirements in Article 5 of the Wyoming Constitution. This means that they must be a U.S. citizen and must have been a Wyoming resident for at least three years. A candidate may not be younger than 30, and Wyoming imposes a mandatory retirement age of 70. A candidate must have at least nine years of legal experience.

While Wyoming initially elected justices to the Supreme Court, the state changed the selection process to an assisted appointment method in 1972. This means that the Wyoming Judicial Nominating Commission controls the process. The Commission usually consists of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, three active members of the Wyoming State Bar, and three non-attorneys who are appointed by the Governor of Wyoming. Once a justice has been selected, they will need to win a retention election every eight years to stay on the Court. The justices of the Court select the Chief Justice, who holds that position for four years.

Browse Opinions From the Wyoming Supreme Court

Recent Decisions From the Wyoming Supreme Court
Sierra Jade Snowden v. Tony Tyrone Jaure
Date: September 21, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 103
Docket Number: S-21-0032
Snyder v. Snyder  
Date: September 20, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 101
Docket Number: S-20-0203

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court clarifying an order it entered in 2017 dividing the Aimone Ranch into two parcels, holding that the district court properly clarified its 2017 order under Wyo...

In re Guardianship of ARB  
Date: September 20, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 102
Docket Number: S-21-0005

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court ordering the guardianship of ARB, a minor child, to terminate, holding that the district court did not err when it determined that exceptional circumstances d...

Miller v. State  
Date: September 16, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 100
Docket Number: S-21-0008

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court convicting Defendant of one count of felony strangulation of a household member and one count of misdemeanor domestic battery, holding that there was no error...

Eddy Angelo Fernandez v. The State of Wyoming
Date: September 13, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 99
Docket Numbers: S-21-0099, S-21-0098
O'Roake v. State, ex rel. Department of Family Services  
Date: August 31, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 98
Docket Number: S-21-0017

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the child support order requiring Father to pay post-majority support for his child, Zao, while Zao was attending college, holding that the district court abused its discretion when it ordered...

Heimer v. Heimer  
Date: August 30, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 97
Docket Number: S-21-0033

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed in part and reversed in part the judgments of the district court granting in part and denying in part Mother's fifth motion for order to show cause and finding Father in contempt of court upon...

James v. Winkel  
Date: August 20, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 96
Docket Number: S-20-0272

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court granting summary judgment to Defendant Gerald James on his quiet title claim and granting both Defendants summary judgment on Plaintiffs' remaining claims, ho...

Merlak v. State  
Date: August 18, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 95
Docket Number: S-21-0002

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court convicting Defendant of third-degree sexual assault and sentencing him to a sentence of five to eight years in prison, holding that there was no error in the...

Hood v. State  
Date: August 17, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 94
Docket Numbers: S-21-0019, S-21-0018

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the order of the district court granting the Wyoming Department of Family Service's petition to terminate Father's and Mother's parental rights under Wyo. Stat. Ann. 14-2-309(a)(iii) and (a)(v)...

Childers v. State  
Date: August 16, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 93
Docket Number: S-20-0236

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's convictions for attempted second-degree murder, felony property destruction, and other offenses, holding that the district court did not err when it denied Defendant's motion for ju...

Jackson v. State  
Date: August 11, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 92
Docket Number: S-21-0015

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's conviction of strangulation of a household member, holding that there was no error in the district court's evidentiary rulings. On appeal, Defendant argued, among other things, tha...

Christopher Lane Carson v. The State of Wyoming
Date: August 11, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 91
Docket Number: S-21-0091
Bernal-Molina v. State  
Date: August 4, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 90
Docket Number: S-20-0204

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's conviction of three counts of third-degree sexual abuse of a minor between the ages of thirteen and fifteen years, holding that the district court did not improperly instruct the ju...

Klingbeil v. State  
Date: August 4, 2021
Citation: 2021 WY 89
Docket Number: S-20-0213

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's conviction of first-degree murder, holding that the opinion testimony of a forensic pathologist did not materially prejudice Defendant's defense. On appeal, Defendant argued that t...

The opinions published on Justia State Caselaw are sourced from individual state court sites. These court opinions may not be the official published versions, and you should check your local court rules before citing to them. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site, or the information linked to on the state site.